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tv   U.S. House of Representatives  CSPAN  April 8, 2014 6:00pm-9:01pm EDT

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helsinki final act by president ford and 34 other nations including the soviet union, including west germany, including east germany. never again. the extraordinary holocaust that cost the lives of millions and millions and millions and millions more. the holocaust where six million jews were taken from us, taken from their families, taken from their countries, taken from fe, but millions more in russia, ukraine, and literally ,cores of other venues murdered
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murdered not because of their engagement in war, not because f their engagement in crime, but because of who they were. what religion they had. what ethnic background they claimed. murdered. murdered because of what they were. and the murderers dirt not like what they were. not their character, not their intellect, not their conduct. but who they are -- who they were. so here we are 20 years later, was watched as genocide again perpetrated in rwanda. the general sithe in rwanda the
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20 -- the genocide in rwanda, the 20th anniversary of which we mark this week, provided us with one of our most painful examples of our failure to act. not americans alone, mr. speaker, the entire civilized watched, lamented, but did not stop the genocide. america and much of the world waited far too long to become involved in rwanda and even then, international peace keepers were not given aba mandate or the resources to stop the killing. i'm sure many of us, mr. speaker, saw the movie "hotel rwanda." nick nolte played the blue-helmeted colonel who was in .harge of the u.n. unit when carnage was occurring and
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colonel -- and the colonel that nolte was playing was watching, someone asked, why aren't you doing something? and his response was, because that is not our mandate, it is to report. i will say in a minute that thousands of lives were saved by the blue helmets. and by others. but the u.n. mandate was not to stop it. but to report it. president clinton has expressed regret that the united states did not act in time to save lives, saying last year, and i quote if we'd gone in sooner, i believe we could have saved at least a third of the lives that were lost. now the figure of 800,000 is being used but that's an estimate. as little perhaps as half a million, as many as a million
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plus. it's estimated that more than a million men, women, and children were killed in the span as reverend cleaver, congressman cleaver, my friend, emanuel cleaver, said, a million in 100 days. 10,000 victims every day. seven people shot or hacked to death with machetes every inute. every minute. and the world watched and wrung its hands and said how wrong that was. and the machetes kept hacking. more than just killing the ru -- more than just kill, the rwanda genocide left hundreds of thousands of people people infected with h.i.v. as a result of another implement of war those who perpetrate genocide have used -- rape.
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a crime not of sexual desire, but of violence. of injury. of hate. widows of murdered men were infected and in many cases left to bear the children of their rapists, children, of course, who were infected too. the violence left 400,000 orphans. small children. who then had to learn at a young age how to care for their younger siblings on their own. mr. speaker, the rwandan genocide provided the world with yet another lesson in our shared responsibility, not just to say the words never again, but to mean them. r. speaker, we are our brothers' keepers and our brother needs our bridge lance and our help as we need his.
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and we are our sisters' keepers, just as well. just as genocide displayed humanities darkest side, it also provided us with proof of human courage and defiance in the face of evil from the outnumbered u.n. peace keepers who saved lives wherever they could, and that ability was far too limited, to the individual rwandans who risked death and rape to protect their neighbors. we acknowledge those few moments of moral clarity in the midst of great evil. i said that i was chairman of the commission on security and cooperation in europe. 250,000 bosnians lost their lives in a genocide perpetrated by serbian leader slobodan milosevic. we finally acted in that case and saved literally hundreds of
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thousands more. deposed milosevic and put him in the dock for war crimes. in the hague. but not before 8,000 souls in bosnia were gunned down and . rdered u.n. troops failed to stop that. again, insufficient resources. so, mr. speaker, as we mark this 20th anniversary of the genocide in rwanda, i join my colleagues in mourning those who were killed and in recognizing the many changes rwanda has undergone under -- over the past two decades. we all wish rwanda continued success in its efforts to take from the ashes a successful society. to protect the safety and freedom of its people.
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i hope americans across the country will take some time this week to reflect not only on the rwandan genocide but all generalsides, to remember its horrors and to promise never to let our nation sit idly by as a genocide takes place. mr. speaker, it's a complicated , too long, too often delayed. i want to thank my colleagues for joining me to recognize this solemn anniversary. i want to thank in particular my dear friend, emanuel cleaver. who preaches to his flock, who preaches to his constituents. and yes, who preaches to all of us, to look to the better nature of our souls, reach out, to lift up, to protect, to give solace, to give sympathy, to give
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empathy, give understanding. and to be our brother's keeper. i yield back the balance of my time. >> we'd like to thank the distinguished whip for his comments -- mr. cleaver: we'd like to thank the distinguished whip for his comments and for requesting that we have this opportunity to remember this evening those horrific events in world history must the whip said, we declare, never again. and it must be real and serious and if necessary we must redouble our efforts against evil anywhere it presents its ugly head. the pain that i'm still feeling here tonight is, since 1995, the international tribunal has indicted 95 individuals. t me go back and remind you,
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800,000, could be many more, died. 95 individuals have been endieted. -- have been dieted and there have been -- have been indicted and there have been 49 convictions. if there's a person with a heart anywhere on the planet that heart should be broken right now knowing what happened to the rwandan people, what happened to , en, little girls, children the world shall not tolerate this again. i would like to now yield time to the distinguished congressman from memphis, tennessee, from the ninth district of tennessee, mr. steve cohen. mr. cohen: thank you, mr. cleaver, i appreciate your time and i appreciate whip hoyer for bringing this hour to the attention of the members of congress and the opportunity to speak on this historic 20th
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anniversary of the slaughter. i had the opportunity to visit rwanda in the company of one of the great men who served in this house, congressman donald payne. congressman payne had made several trips to rwanda and several trips to africa and we visited the memorial there to e victims, which is a very special place in the world, burial spot and flowers and plaques and the museum, accompanied there too. it made a great impression on me, it would make a great impression on anybody. but one thing that came out of the trip was my realization that today in rwanda, the hutus and the tutsis get along and what was horrific 20 years ago, one of the most horrific ethnic
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cleansings, or attempts at ethnic cleansings and hate, atrocities, murders, over time, the rwandan people have overcome that. the distinctions are no longer present and the people do get along. obviously because of the horrific situation there's an imbalance in the populations. and i'm sure there's still some memories. but we do need to learn, as i'm sure has been said, about when we turn to thinking of other people as different because we're all the same. there was a time a little after this, i think it was about 1999 when i was at union station, president clinton was there and we had some time to talk, and he related how they human jew noem project that dr. francis collins, now the head of the n.i.h., was headed up and how we're all 99.96% the same, and
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he mentioned the hutus and the tutsis and how they were so, so, so alike. but that -- the minor differences that were visible caused them to have this awful, awful, horrific genocide. it pained president clinton, and whip highway wrer mentioned that this is something he brought up -- and whip hoyer mentioned that this is something he brought up before, that it was a mistake not to intervene. it was right after the difficulty we had in moe gandhi -- in mogadishu, the helicopter, the way the american soldiers re killed and horrifically treated in the streets of mogadishu by the somalian people there and it was reticent to get involved in another situation in
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africa. it's a tight line to decide whether to go in or not. and the president made a mistake, he admits it. and we have to realize that the united states of america has a special place in the world, we're the only country that has the ability to see that mankind doesn't engage in horrific generalsides again. so when the opportunity for the united states to get involved and save a slaughter, save a genocide, the united states has responsibility. as much as it's difficult after the wars in iraq and afghanistan that our troops, the action, the situation like rwanda present themselves, it's incumbent on taos support whoever is the president in -- it's incumbent on us to support whoever is the president to take action. i thank whip hoyer for calling
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for this hour, mr. cleaver for leading it and i want to add my thoughts and reflections after having visited rwanda with a great member of congress, donald payne. i yield back the balance of my time. mr. cleaver: thank you, mr. cohen. mr. speaker, may i inquire about e remaining time? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman has 28 minutes remaining. mr. cleaver: i would like to yield the 28 minutes to my colleague, the distinguished the ntleman from new york, mr. gregory meek. meek meek thank you, mr. -- mr. meeks: thank you, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york will
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control the remainder of the time. mr. meeks: thank you, mr. cleaver, for giving your voice, your voice of remembrance, your oice of comfort, your voice of concern, your voice that says this terrible genocide shall never happen again, nor should -- the human species allow such a tragedy to occur as what happened 20 years ago when simply because of being a member of a different tribe, people were killed.
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because if we -- and when i visited rwanda, i had the opportunity to go to the museum where memorials were set up, but you saw the remains, the bones of a number of individuals that were slaughtered. and you also learned the history of what took place in rwanda, how the people were taught, especially during colonization to make one should rule over the other. and it went on to such a time when people start to cry out for equality and democracy and moving on and one, just because they happened to be of a different tribe. to hutu majority,
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tootsie group. tragedy, husbands turning in their wives, wives turning in their husbands where there were mixed groups, feeling one was superior to the other. tragedy. yet, the global community sat silently on the sidelines. sat silently on the sidelines. mr. speaker, at this time before i say more, i see the distinguished gentleman from the great state of illinois, and the city of chicago, and i yield him such time as he may consume to the honorable danny davis.
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mr. davis: thank you very much, and i want to thank you, mr. speaker, and thank my good friend from new york, representative gregory meeks, not only for yielding, not only for being engaged in this discussion, but for the tremendous amount of time, energy and effort that you spend dealing with international every recognizing that day as we see the increases in technology and our ability to communicate more effectively with other people of -- across the world, how small and how much smaller our world is becoming. and so things that may have been considered far away are now much closer to our every day
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existence, so i thank you for your leadership. i also want to commend representative cleaver and our whip for convening this session. and as i listened to representative cleaver give a i of the history of rwanda, was actually glued to the television set and felt immobilized that i couldn't or didn't want to move and to think two decadesthe last we would experience in our modern-day world such horrific
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tions as that which we are commemorating and remembering later. ay some 20 years to think that the international , watched, t by discussed, but didn't move, wouldn't move, couldn't move and tched 800,000 people and wiped out. more be some of them experienced some of the most horrific actions that could be taken against a people. and you know, i guess the whole
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share in the blame, didn't move it, on it, couldn't find a way to bring world interest, world concerns together to stop it or prevent it before all of these people had lost their lives. yes,o yes, it is shamed -- it is shame on our world and all of us must take the responsibility and share in the blame. when a tragedy is occurring to some of us, it really affects in a way all of us.
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when a government is unable or ,nwilling to protect its people .hen it becomes a world issue and the rest of us have the responsibility to step in. nd as much as some of us abhor war and as much as we know it's not the best out lization to get involved in war-like activity, there are some things that you just can't let go without doing whatever it is that you can do. and so i hope that our world is saying that never ever again will we stand by and let such as
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this take place, that never ever andn will we be immobilized wondering about what to do or can we do or should we do. we know that something must be done. i thank you, again, for not only yielding, but i thank you for your leadership on international affairs, which helps us to know that yes, we can be our brother's keepers and our brothers don't have to be just across the street. they can be across the ocean. they can be across the continent. they can be in other lands, because all of us are joined together as a part of the mutual
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elements of our world. so i thank you for your leadership and i yield back to you the balance of my time. mr. meeks: i want to thank the gentleman from illinois, great city of chicago, who long before he came to congress, as a member of the chicago city council spoke truth to power and the words he has just articulated, that we shall never forget, that we will make sure that are our brother's keeper, that we need not have what i would call gang mentality ourselves, that simply because someone is away across the ocean, may not look like some of us look, may not talk or
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speak the way we speak, that when we see evil, we won't stand silently by. we will stand against it and fight. dr. king once said, injustice nywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. is a it is evil anywhere . reat to all of us everywhere yesterday rwanda launched a week of official mourning to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the genocide, which left 800,000 people dead and changed the face of a nation forever. and i want the people of rwanda to know that i stand in solid
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-- with them during this solidarityy in this week of mourning, but i stand with them next week and stand with them the week after that and stand with them the week after that, because what happened during the toong and summer of 1994 is important to be mourned only on an anniversary. the tragic consequences of ethnic hatred and violence must never be forgotten. but we must never allow the events of 1994 to be repeated, else. rwanda or anywhere we must once and for all put all racial and ethnic strife behind us as we strive for a better, a
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better future for our children and grandchildren. and mr. speaker, we have in this whose voice one has always spoken about justice, ne whose actions was to feed those who are hungry, clothe those who had no clothes. put a roof over the head of those who were homeless. we have in the chamber today, mr. speaker, an individual who didn't sit by quietly when he saw injustices here in america.
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he stood up and was counted for. he wasn't sigh ent in inaction as unfortunately the world was in 1994. he stood up. he put his life on the line and said i must have a voice for the voiceless. i, an american hero, who with pleasure, are able to tell my children that i serve in the united states house of representatives with an american hero, an american icon. and i yield now as much time as he may consume to that icon, a true american hero, to a fighter for justice and a man who is committed to almighty god, the onorable bobby rush.
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mr. rush: mr. speaker, i want to thank the gentleman from new -- for not only his granting me some time to speak on this issue, but i just want to observe that he has been one of the most remarkable persons to ever serve in this house, this exalted house of representatives. has made enormous contributions to the plight of , those o need a voice who need a heart, to those who
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need a spirit that will fight for them, where they cannot fight for themselves. and i know that congressman the test ek has stood to those who on would deny -- who are denied human rights anywhere in the world and i am so honored he will allow me a few minutes to hare with the nation the sadness of the hour but also to celebrate the resurgence of the rwandan people. sadness of the hour as we come
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to the floor today, mr. speaker, o commemorate a very salient was ober observance as indicated by prior speakers. ust 20 queers ago this week, the world witnessed one of the worst acts of violence since the end of world war ii. it unfolded before our very eyes . most of us can recall where we , the what we were doing
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lives that we lived just 20 years ago. r. speaker, i am right now referring to the outbreak of violence just 20 years ago in a place that most of us had never heard of, a place called rwanda. d now this place, rwanda, is written in our psyches as one of the horror stories of our lives, of our time. this outbreak of violence in the ultimately led to death of over 800,000 ordinary men, women, boys, and girls.
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this is an atrocity that has been appropriately labeled and called, that will go down in .istory as the rwandan genocide just that word, genocide, should give us all pause and all should strike an attentive ear whenever we hear that word genocide. because the images that are njured up in our minds are images of some of the most horrendous acts of man's inhumanity to man, of human inhumanity to human beings. since the time of the rwandan
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genocide, i want to congratulate the decent people, the justice seeking people, the honorable people of rwanda who have made great strides to rebuild their lives and to rebuild their country. wounds, and to move forward as a nation. to -- today, mr. speaker, rwanda is being led by a president that 20 years ago would have been tutsi, ble, an ethnic esident -- the president has for the past 14 years overseen
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rwandans -- rwanda's rebirth, of made the world proud rwandans' incredible resurrection and progress. and yesterday's memorial service in rwanda, he offered these simple words of everlasting hope. pay te, he says, as we the te to the victims both living and those who have ssed, we also salute the unbreakable rwandan spirit, end of quote. mr. speaker, i, too, salute the
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rwandan spirit and applaud the just how far for they've come in just a few years. just 20 years. and the same time that i applaud he rwandan people, i admonish, i encourage, i plead, i ask, i beg the international criminal tribunal for rwanda to continue their quest for justice and to bring those to trial -- those escaped the now and the appeal
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of justice-seeking people throughout the world. at the same time, mr. speaker, i must remind our own government stood on this floor, in this congress, in this capitol, in this nation, and we promised ourselves, we promised he world, we promised those -- anyone who had ears to hear, that we would never, ever again allow such brutal violence to occur anywhere else in the world , that we had finally learned our lesson, and that we would
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ver have to relearn this awesome and brutal lesson and yet, mr. speaker, -- this awful and brutal lesson, and yet, mr. speaker, we still see the same thing occurring, the same atrocity, the same murders and rapes, the same pillaging, the same acts of inhumane treatment for fellow human beings, we bear witness that the same thing is again happening all over our world. whether syria or sudan, our nation, the u.s., the united states, america, and the
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american people, and the entire up l community, must rise and stand up, shoulder to shoulder, and ensure that humanitarian rights are protected all over this world. , we have witnessed in rwanda global inaction has already led to genocide. global inaction will always lead to genocide. we simply cannot idly stand by and allow -- and allow genocide o continue in our world.
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mr. speaker, i must close with a poet, om the english 's n donne, who said, any man death diminishes me, because i involved in mankind, end of quote. i want to paraphrase mr. donne's quote and is a that any human's death diminishes me, because i m involved in humankind. again, hats off to you, my honorable and humble colleague from the great state of new york. you don't surprise me, being the
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chief sponsor of this particular moment in time in the history of this institution because mr. a s, this is just simply little step for you, when it comes to the history, when it comes to justice for people throughout the world, it's for a stepperstep and you are a stepper for mankind. mr. meeks: thank you, mr. rush, thank you for having the broad shoulders i stand on for being here. how much time do we have left? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman has 30 seconds remaining. mr. meeks: let me wrap up this way, then. over the last several months, thousands of rwandans have watched as a torch symbolized those who perished, known as the flame of remembrance, was passed
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hand-to-hand, village-to-village across the nation. that torch finally arrived yesterday at the national genocide memorial under dark skies and rain. the rain did not distinguish the flame and won't for the next 100 days. the flame will burn in rwanda and remind the world of the 100 days of violence which mar ma -- which marked its streets 20 years ago. let us work together to ensure, mr. speaker, that it never happens again and we can live in peace. i thank you and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the entleman's time has expired. under the speaker's announced -- for what uary 3
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purpose does the gentleman seek recognition? >> request unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. yesterday, the united states department of energy released its 2014 strategic plan which reiterates how the president is committed to an all of the above energy strategy. i personally was pleased to hear the administration reiterate their commitment to expand america's domestic energy resources, including fossil fuels which is fundamental to the nation's economic security. the report also outlined the
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administration's goal to, and i quote, decouple our economy from the global oil market, end quote. unfortunately the administration's policy continues to fall short of their rhetoric. just one example since president obama took office, total federal oil production has decleaned 7.8% and federal natural gas production has declined 1%. no wonder that according to new data released this week from the bureau of land management, federal onshore oil and natural gas leases are at the lowest levels in more than a decade. mr. speaker, real energy security will take actually pursuing rather than merely claiming an all of the above energy approach. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. under the speaker's announced policy of january 3, 2013, the gentleman from texas, mr. gohmert, is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the majority leader.
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mr. gohmert: thank you, mr. speaker. there's a deeply troubling matter that has come before our government here in the united iran is at again the bottom of it. they have shown since 1979, since president carter hailed -- well, he was pushing for theous -- well, actually khomeini carter hailed as a man of peace. and what has been wrought to use morris, of samuel b.
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are years and years of terrorism islamic nds of radical jihaddists. and we get word that iran has named one of those original -- well, one of the people involved in the original hostage-taking incident in tehran in 1979, as its ambassador to the u.n. and i want to recognize my very good friend, mr. lamborn from colorado, who has really taken the lead in an appropriate response from our house. i yield. mr. lamborn: i thank the gentleman from texas in getting this time tonight so we can talk about this important issue. mr. speaker, last week, we learned something shocking and appalling. the iranian government wants to
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appoint a terrorist as ambassador to the united nations. a man who assisted on the attack on our embassy in tehran and held americans hostage. this is the man that the new moderate government in iran wants to represent iran in new york city. this is unconscionable and unacceptable. it is time for all of us to speak up with one loud and unified voice against this injustice. at this moment, the president of the united states does not have the legal authority to keep this man off of our shores. the president can deny visas to diplomats if they have been caught spying or our allies but can't someone out of our country if they are a terrorist. they can be admitted as a diplomat and get a visa. last week, senator ted cruz and
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i introduced legislation to fix this problem. our bill would give the president authority to do the right thing and deny this man a visa. senator cruz received strong support from democrats in the senate like senator chuck schumer of new york. the bill passed the senate unanimously last night, 100-0. how many issues pass the senate 100-0. i'm working to quickly move this bill forward so we don't have an walking the st streets with diplomatic immunity. named himself had been an ambassador, the president wouldn't have the authority to deny him a visa. we have to fix it and that's why this legislation is before us. the cruz-lamborn legislation would give the president the
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ability to do the right thing and deny iranian terrorists a visa. time heals some wounds but time should not cause amnesia. letting this man in the country with diplomatic immunity would cause pain to those who were hostages and jeopardize the safety and security of this nation. i urge my colleagues to support this legislation and for house leadership to move it quickly to passage as soon as possible. i thank the gentleman from texas for bringing this issue to the attention of the american people through this time here on the floor tonight. thank you, mr. speaker. and i yield back to the gentleman from texas. mr. gohmert: i thank my dear friend from colorado. when i heard that such an outrage was being suggested, i said to my staff, we got to do
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something. and i was told and i should have suspected my friend, doug lamborn from colorado, was already out there and already has a bill, h.r. 4357. and i was brought a dear colleague letter accompanying that and i said we have to help our friend do what's right for america. i was pleased that ted cruz was able to get that pushed through in the senate, and it shows frankly there is still hope for the senate. that's encouraging. you look for hope where you can get it. but i remember so well, 1979, 980, i was in the army at fort benning and this attack occurred and we were outraged. there was nobody i knew in the army who was dying to go to iran
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but everybody i knew at fort benning and other posts, we expected to go, because it was an act of war. our embassy was attacked in tehran. it was an act of war. nd nothing really happened for 444 days. there was a failed rescue attempt. and i still, mr. speaker, have asked from the floor before, and i wish somebody could verify for sure -- i had a friend from fort benning told me that the original plan from the rescue required that 12 helicopters land into 0 or so in iran into a staging area there and at the time they knew where
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the hostages were. there were -- there was still good intel and knew where they were, so this was going to be an effort to rescue them. this was the original delta force. our friend, jerry boykin, now at the family research council, was part of the original delta force and i talked to him about that time in the desert. but they were to meet up with some aircraft that would have supplies, things they needed. and in order to make the trip as general boykin confirmed, they knew they had to have six helicopters. what i would like to get subsubstantial on there but the
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12nt military group proposed helicopters to go in and their reasoning -- this is back when i was in the army, this is what was being told -- the reasoning is when you go across hundreds miles of sand, desert, with turbine engines, you run the risk of having high loss rate of your helicopters. so they asked for 12, thinking that six was absolutely essential to have at the staging area inside iran that they should allow for 50% loss of the helicopters. i still want to find out, is it true that the 12 helicopters were proposed, but that the white house said no, 12 would look like an invasion, so let's
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scale it back to eight. and i was told the dialogue went , well, if we have eight and have four losses, there's no mission. if we don't do it now, we don't know where they'll move them. we should go with 12. the white house said we don't want to go with 12. we don't want it to look like an invasion, scale it back to eight. general boykin confirmed there were eight helicopters that made the trip. when they got to the staging area and it was clear that only five helicopters were going to make it, he said there was an automatic abort at that point, and unfortunately as we know from the news of what happened, one of the choppers as it attempted to rise up, the pilot vertigo, as the
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sand swirls around you, the helicopter slightly turned and at the were lost desert floor at the staging area in iran. i don't fault anyone who was part of the delta force. that was some of the most heroic people that america produced and were willing to risk it all and in the effort to go after our ostages. the suggestion, proposal was originally 12 and it was scaled back to eight or whether the administration, the commander in chief just said go with eight, either way, the error was where
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the buck stops at the top with the commander in chief, because just like president kennedy admitted after he withdrew the full air support that he had promised during the bay of pigs' invasion, as he said afterwards, we would have been better off doing a full-scale invasion instead of something as embarrassing or humiliating or words to that effect. if you're going to rescue american lives, you commit whatever it takes. the military is always ready to commit whatever it takes. our problem comes in the chain at the very ally top. that's why it's been so tragic
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in afghanistan that in a period president time of bush being commander in chief, president obama as commander in chief, twice or so the fatalities and even more of njuries, debilitating, serious injuries. the rules of engagement are critical in a battle like that, whether it's going to rescue hostages, whether it's going to provide a peacekeeping mission, it is absolutely imperative that our military have the full authority to protect themselves d win whatever battle may be
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confronted and come home. the lesson that all too often is not learned from vietnam is not that we should never get involved in foreign battles, the lesson is as should be, one that has not been learned is this, if we are going to commit american men and women to combat, then give them authority to win and bring them home. that should be the lesson of vietnam. it should be the lesson of iraq. it should be the lesson of afghanistan. and yet, we still have people in ghanistan who don't really understand why they're there, but don't want to be the last american to die in afghanistan.
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around theee surveys world indicating that the united states has lost tremendous respect. and in areas where our president, along with many of the rest of us thought, ok, we lot president who did a of learning in an islamic country, as he indicated, so surely he will help our relationships with and within muslim countries and yet as you look at surveys in muslim countries around the world, we're less respected now than we were under president and commander in chief george w. bush, especially when you're dealing with radical islamic leaders.
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there are so many people in iran. and i have met some of them this surrounding countries, refugees from iran, who verify that there are so many iranian people, they love americans. but clearly their leadership does not. it's a slap in the face for the iranian leadership to think that they could get away, to think that we have such a weak command for the chief that they could send over someone who is a , anicipant in an act of war international crime against humanity, attacking an embassy and taking hostages, and mistreating those hostages. yet they thought they could get away with it.
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and if you look at what's been happening around the world, perhaps it's not that difficult to understand why iran felt they could get away with something so heinous as to send a participant of the original international crime and act of war of attacking our embassy and holding hostages. some may say, well this guy, we don't know that he was there when the embassy was actually attacked. but as i know from my judge days and prosecutor days, federal law , state laws i'm aware of, and in international circles, anyone who aids, encourages, abets is considered a principal of the crime. so that's what we have here. an arrogant, condescending slap
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in the face of the united states president, congress, everyone who has any leadership in this country. a show of no respect to send someone who is well known to have participated, despite the effort it is -- efforts to minimize role he is may have had. so why would they think they could do that? you look, well, gee. the russians and the chinese have taken the measure of our president. they know he's the commander in chief. they know how our government functions. iran has done the same thing, syria has done the same thing, others around the world have looked and they saw, and i've even had some world leaders say,
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look, mubarak, none of us really liked him but he was your ally and he gave you a longer period of peace on the israeli border with egypt than any other time. so we couldn't believe when you turned on your ally. you have written agreements with mubarak. we don't understand how you could just toss aside an ally . o has helped you so much and people in other countries have said, we couldn't believe gaddafi has blood on his hands and yet after 2003 he had some kind of conversion experience, after he saw the u.s. go into iraq and he said, look, i'm giving up my nouks, you can take them, come in, inspect whatever you want, i'll be your best friend in fighting terrorism and as some other moderate muzz rim
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-- muslim leaders in the mideast have said, he was your friend. other leaders in the mideast have said, he provided you more help and more information on terrorists than any other country but israel. so what did we do? we came after gaddafi. we bombed his forces. and it seems pretty clear without the united states' assistance, gaddafi would have stayed in power, we would still be getting information on terrorism in the mideast from gaddafi and his people. and we would have four people that didn't die in benghazi. and terrorism wouldn't be so profoundly manifesting itself in orth africa and the mideast.
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but this administration turned on someone who had turned into a friend to the united states and an enemy of terrorism. we have moderate muslim friends in afghanistan who actually defeated the taliban for us. my heart breaks for my friend massoud and others who risked their lives to fight the taliban, who defeated the taliban under the leadership of general dustim, who some now in this administration call a war criminal, he fought the taliban like the taliban fights, he defeated them, he did us a great favor. the taliban was acknowledged to have been in disarray and completely defeated and then we decide to nation build. i know this is not the fault of
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president obama, it was done before he came in, but we decided to nation build. and we sent tens of thousands of troops into iran, whereas we'd only had less than 500 there at the time the taliban was routed. how could we do that? we provided them weapon, gave them air cover, gave them intel, we had embedded special ops and intelligence, and we let them do the fighting. and we whipped the taliban by letting the enemy of our ebb many -- of our enemy defeat our enemy. and now this administration refers to them as war criminals. they were our allies. they were our friends. they defeated the taliban system of we mistreat our friends who isked their lives fighting our enemy for us and for themselves,
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make no mistake. and then this administration is constantly reaching out to the taliban. we want to talk. we want to sit down with you. and offered at one time, buy them luxurious offices, international offices, you sit down, you don't have to agree to reach an agreement, just to sit down with us and talk and we may let a lot of your people who have murdered americans, we may let them go free if you'll just sit down and talk with us. and then the chinese have seen how we turned on allies and reached out to enemies, they've had their eyes on certain places near china, south china sea, other places surrounding china, they've had their eye on places, just like russia has. and now they see the united states turning on allies,
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mbracing enemies, they ask the same questions, they're bound to ask the same questions, some of , are ies have expressed you still fighting against terror? because it's still fighting you and we can't tell that you're elping in the fight anymore. and so china starts making moves they never would have made five years ago. because they wouldn't have . nted to risk a u.s. response and russia wouldn't have made the move five years ago but they counted the cost, they measured the leader of the united states of america, just like crews clever did in the early 19 -- just like kruschev did in the
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early 1960's and figured, we can move on crimea and the united states will do nothing. that's why they laughed when it was announced -- the president announced he was going to put sanctions on some of the the russian leaders, they were shocked, that's all you're going to do? that's it? wow. let's move some more troops to the ukrainian border, maybe we can grab some more of ukraine and the u.s. will don't do nothing. weakness is provocative. it's always been, it will always be. i knew -- four years in the i did did that before
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anything else, so i majored in what i loved, history. there's so many lessons repeted over and over again in history. but that's why, mr. speaker, it was so shocking to hear an thatted secretary of state genghist you pronounced kahne actually make the statement that the russians were making a 19th century move on crimea. when history dictates that what the russians did in moving on crimea, an area they've had their eyes on, have wanted to take, is -- yes, it's 19th century. it is 20th century. it is 21st century. will be 22nd century if the
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war tarries. it was 18th, 17th, 16th, 15th, 14th, it's been in every century. you go back to the dark ages, 500 to 1000 a.d. or 476 to 800 a.d., whatever you call the dark ages, this was the kind of move that was made then. eople made moves, assaultive moves on other people, places, evilhings because there is in this world. mr. speaker, there is the good that our founders acknowledged, that god put there. that's why they said we are endowed by our creator with certain inalienable rights, because they knew there was a creator.
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they knew there was evil in the world. and they set up as many obstacles to power grabs in this country as they could. and they felt pretty comfortable that congress would never allow either the supreme court or the president to usurp legislative power without reining them in. t's time that we did that. my dear friend doug lamb born roduced h.r. 4357, it says thsh. -- it says this. the purpose is to deny admissions to the united states to any member of the united nations who has engaged in espionage activities against the united states, poses a threat to the united states, and other purposes. it goes on to say, a bill to
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deny admission to the united states of any representative to the united nations who has engaged in espionage activities against the united states, poses a threat to the united states national security interests, or is engaged in a terrorist activity against the united states. and then it goes on in detail as far as changing section 407-a of the foreign relations authorization act in order to make it possible where we could deny entrance to iran's proposed u.n. ambassador. it is time we did that. there is a story from fox news dated march 31 that's entitled one-time hostage of iranian militants urges denial of visa to new iran envoy involved in
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siege. written by eric shawn. it says hostages captured after the 1979 siege on the u.s. embassy in tehran are seen in this undated file photo. the former american hostage, barry rosen, held by student extremists at the u.s. embassy in tehran for more than a year, said monday, it would be an outrage and disgrace if washington gave a visa to one of the militants recently named by iran as its new u.n. ambassador. it may be a precedent but if the president and congress don't condemn this act by the islamic republic then our captivity and suffering for 444 days at the hands of iran was for nothing, rosen said. . he can never set foot on american soil. a quote from rosen. he also said, it's a disgrace if the united states government
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visa iranian ambassador to the u.n. rosen was the embassy's press at shea who was bliped folded and held at gun -- blind folded and held at gun point along with 51 fellow americans taken hostage. in a statement to fox news, rosen demanded that the obama to nistration deny a visa abu to prevent him from taking up tehran's u.n. post. well, we need to take action, we hold the purses, the purse strings, and we need to cut off ny funding for any effort that might be undertaken to grant this international terrorist a visa so that he can come on american soil and have
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diplomatic immunity. so i'm quite proud of my friend from colorado, mr. lamborn and i have traveled to israel together. i have seen him conduct himself in international settings in ways that should make colorado proud of him as well as the united states. so my friend ted cruz got a bill through the senate, passed 100-0, as reported by the a.p. april 7, senate approved a bill nday to borrow man with ties to the 1979 iranian hostage crisis who has been tapped to be iran's ambassador to the united nations from entering the united states. by voice vote, republicans and democrats, united behind the
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legislation, sponsored by senator ted cruz, republican of texas, that reflected congressional animosity toward tehran and its selection of abu , iran's envoy choice as a member of a muslim student group that held 52 american hostages for 444 days in the 1979 seizure of the u.s. embassy in tehran. the, quote, nomination is a deliberate and unambiguous insult to the united states, unquote, cruz said in remarks on the senate floor, in which he describes iran's anti-americanism since 1979 and added, quote, this is not the moment for diplomatic niceties, unquote. so, very proud of my friend, ted cruz, senator from texas. this is the way we need to respond to iran's slap in the
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face of the united states. but, again, if you look at the way this administration has , they have o iran laughed openly and said, yes, they were negotiating, yes, they reached a preliminary agreement with this white house , but they're not stopping anything in the way of eveloping nuclear weapons. they made that clear. they're not abandoning their nukes. so what have we done? we gave them a free space in which to keep developing nukes. we don't know what they've been doing behind the scenes. because there have not been inspections, even in all the acilities that we know of. and they brag they're not abandoning anything. and what else did the administration do?
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the administration eased up and allowed them billions of dollars in relief from the no doubt would help them pursue nuclear eapons as they move forward. it is just tragic. why and how this administration is giving the impression to nations like iran that we will not stand up to them. but again, you look at what we did as a nation, we re-elected president obama knowing that before the election he had turned the leader from russia and basically said, tell vladimir putin, of course, that i'll have a lot more flexibility after the election.
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people elected the president knowing that he had telegraphed to the russians that he choo show a lot more weakness -- would show a lot more weakness able to give the russians a lot more of what they wanted after the election in 2012. and if you look at this , inistration's activities , ter the election in 2008 secretary of state hillary with a as sent over goofy-looking button that we thought had a russian reset don't know y -- i what that says she thought it said reset.
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it didn't say reset. and we embarrassed ourselves. but the message was very clear. because the russians and putin in particular knew that the reason that relationships have been strained was toward the end of the bush administration the russians moved on georgia. and the reaction was swift. from president bush. he didn't do as much as i might have thought should be done. but he was embarrassed, he was bound to have been embarrassed because he said he had looked into this man and knew that he was a man of peace, words to that effect, and it had to feel like a bit of a betrayal to president bush when he moved on georgia. so the russian activities of moving on georgia, totally
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abandoning and betraying the outreach by the bush administration, put a significant chill on u.s.-russian relations. that's why they were chilled. that's why diplomatic relations re so stiff at the time that this administration took over. so, when you know that it was the russian invasion and move on georgia that caused a strain n relations, then to the russians, when this administration says, hey, we're really sorry for the way we abilitied in the past, we want to -- acted in the past, we want a new relationship, we want to hit a reset button or whatever we put in russian on this thing, we want to start
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over, the message was clear to vladimir putin. we're sorry that we were owe fended when you broke your -- owe fended when you -- offended when you broke your word to us and invaded georgia. we're sorry that you were aggressive, you were an aggressor, you attacked and invaded, went into a neighboring country and this administration was apologizing for the russians being that aggressive? well, the message was clear. we're not the country we once were. and the message was september, go a-- sent, go ahead and take what you think you can. and he has. so, countries around the world are looking at us, we know we still have the greatest military, despite all the cuts, still the grate et -- greatest military in the world and yet
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if you don't have leaders willing to show strength, then people will take advantage. it's not a 19th century historical action, it's a 21st and every century since man has been on this planet. some have asked, you know, gee, if these inalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness really are inalienable, then why do all people around the world not have them? and the answer i think is , they were an inheritance bequeathed to us by our creator, but just as any does tance, if the heir
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and aim that inheritance have a willingness to protect it and fight for it and maintain it, then you won't keep it. thus, when ben franklin was reportedly asked what you have given us, he replied, a epublic, if you can keep it. well, muslim moderates are concerned because they see the united states trying to embrace radicals. and again i am so proud of the in ate muslims in egypt joining, figuratively and literally, arm in arm, hand in
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handy christians, with secularists in egypt and coming to the street in millions and millions and millions and demanding a leader who would not usurp power that was not his in the constitution, demanding his removal, demanding a constitution that would allow them to impeach a leader like morsi had become, made slim brother, they clear, we don't want radical islamists, leaders or people in our government, because they have one goal and that is taking over all power, subjugating everyone else, including moderate muslims, christians, that's why it was so ironic to hear the supreme court, at least one of the
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justices there in effect say, just pay the tax and then you got your religious beliefs. because that is a shari'a law belief. i know she's not aware of that. but actually under shari'a law, if you're a christian you can pay a tax and subjugate urself humbly before the muslim government and they will allow you to practice your religion, so long as you remain subjugated to shari'a and to the muslim leaders. but in this nation, you're not supposed to have to pay a tax or a fine in order to practice your religious beliefs. and in egypt, god bless those people, they didn't want to do that either. so they got rid of the muslim brotherhood leaders and what else did they do, mr. speaker?
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they declared the muslim brotherhood as a terrorist organization. if one reads the opinion from the dallas federal court and also from the fifth circuit court of appeals in the holyland foundation trial, it seems pretty clear, the evidence is there, that the muslim brotherhood should be accepted as a terrorist organization. and groups like care, who have such a powerful influence in this administration, who can call and have an intelligence briefing shut down at langley, as they have, who can call and complain that the training materials at the f.b.i. offend them and have them purged so those f.b.i. training materials no longer offend a front
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organization for the muslim brotherhood, as found by the dallas court and the fifth ircuit court of appeals. and now there's a story from england. the bbc news reports david cameron orders review of the muslim brotherhood. prime minister david cameron has commissioned a review of the muslim brotherhood's u.k. activity, number 10 says. the muslim brotherhood is an islamic movement which has been declared a terrorist group by egypt's government. recent press reports have suggested members have moved to london to escape crackdown in cairo, where the group backs ousted president mohammed morsi. well, they had that in common with at least one or two of our u.s. senators who went over there to back morsi. .
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the article goes on, it said the review would examine the group's policies and activities and the government's policies toward it. according to "the times" it was prompted by evidence that the muslim brotherhood leaders met in london last year to plan their response to events in egypt. the prime minister's spokesman said the main conclusions of the review, due to be completed by the summer, would be made public. asked what had triggered the review, he said the government had received a succession of reports from its embassies in the region building up a picture which the prime minister believed should be examined. number 10 disease not provide any details on which bodies are to be involved in the review. the muslim brotherhood was funned in egypt but now operates in many -- in many states and has influenced other islamic
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movements around the world with its model of political activism combined with islamic charity work. while the brotherhood -- and it has the arabic name -- says it purports, or supports democratic principles, one of its stated aims is to create a state ruled by islamic law, or sharia. its most famous slogan, used worldwide, is, islam is the solution. he organization's backing -- the organization's backing installed president mor see in 2012 but he was ousted, and this is the same mistake cnn and this administration makes they call it a military coup last year after widespread street protests. as the millions and millions and millions of people in egypt made
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clear, millions more than even mor see claimed voted for him, it was not a military coup. this was an uprising by the people of egypt demanding the constitution be followed and the ouster of a president who had -- at scary abbing power speed and many knew if they didn't move at the time they did, a year later would be too late, he would be like dictators often are, elected, then seize all power and you can't ever get rid of them. in any event, this article says in december the new egyptian government declared the muslim brotherhood a terrorist group
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after blaming it for an attack on a police station that killed 16 people. a dunning -- a downing street spokesman said in a statement, quote, the prime minister commissioned an internal government review into the philosophy and activities of the muslim brotherhood and the government's policies toward the organization, end quote. it's interesting, egypt has declared the muslim brotherhood to be a terrorist organization and they should know better than any nation in the world and i thank god for the egyptians that rose up. estimates of a third of the population went to the streets to demand removal and i didn't know until i was over there last fall, they didn't have any provision in the constitution for impeachment. so they needed a constitution where they could impeach a president who steps out -- who usurps power that's not his under the constitution.
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and now england is taking a look to see if they shouldn't declare them terrorist organizations. the reason we can anticipate that in the near future this administration will not declare the muslim brotherhood to be a terrorist organization is because they get advice from two front organizations, as the courts have said, of the muslim brotherhood. that would be the counsel of merican islamic relations, cair, and i can see them from my window, so they've got a good spot to keep watch over capitol hill, and also the islamic society of north america, and its leader is imam ajid, who as far as i know is frequently giving advice, continued advice to the state department, the white house, on anything to do
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with islam. we know that the egyptian paper had reported in december of 2012, when the muslim brotherhood was running the government, that six muslim brothers were in very key and top positions of power and advice within the obama administration. they heralded that as a great thing for the muslim brothers to have that much influence in ashington. and so there shouldn't be a great deal of wonder why this administration, with one of those individuals reported in the egyptian paper being a top advisor in homeland security charged with keeping us safe so
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we have, according to the egyptian paper, a muslim brother , mr. alibari, who was given a secret cleens by -- clearance by janet napolitanoing given access to confidential material, or secret material, and we apparently get advice from this man who -- whose business started a found -- foundation or he started a foundation called the freedom and justice foundation and most of us would say, freedom and justice? that's great. believes in freedom and justice. until you look up the meaning of freedom and justice under sharia law. freedom and justice means freedom to worship allah only and justice only under sharia law. and so it's no big surprise that the muslim brotherhood political
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party in egypt called itself the freedom and justice party. but if there are enough leader here in the united states that know what's good for us, we will see what egypt has done, what england is doing, and even russia has noticed that radical islam is an enemy. they've even tried to warn us but found we don't take warnings well. we should declare the muslim brotherhood to be a terrorist rganization. now, that brings me to another point about the first fort hood shooting that was clearly an act
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enemy rism by an .ombatant even though this administration calls it workplace violence. it was an act of war by a warrior for radical islam. and he was able to kill the 13 hassan did foral more than one reason. one was political correctness kept superior commissioned officers from calling it like they saw it because they didn't ort to be called some racist slam fobe, the term that -- or islamophobe the term that the islamic council had put together to try to intimidate people from
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recognizing the danger that radical islam was. didn't want to be called islamophobe and they knew going up the chain of command they might be looked upon badly if they reported this man for what they saw, not a moderate muslim but a man that was a potential problem. a person who was being radicalized. and another problem was that the people we entrust with rocket propelled grenades, with tanks, with all kinds of weapons, with licopters, that can fire blistering rounds thousands of meters away and kill hundreds and thousands of people, they have that much authority, that much ability, that much power, we trust them with these tremendous weapons that kill
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people and yet we tell them, but we don't trust you to have a pistol with you on a military installation. so just as when a killer walked into a cafeteria in killeen, texas, that adjoins fort hood years ago, he knew no one would have a gun there, so he killed a lot of people, including a woman's parents, she had put her gone in her glove compartment and knew she could have saved her parents if she'd been able to keep her weapon, so she fought for and obtained passage as a new state representative for concealed carry permits. we now have concealed carry because of that first shooting incident in killeen. but this administration didn't
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learn anything when they called that shooting as workplace violence. didn't learn anything about reporting potential threats. and so more people died at fort hood. and i think it's time, mr. speaker, that we said, you know what? military members, men and women who have -- who are putting your lives at risk for us, whom we've entrusted weapons of mass destruction, we're going to trust you with a firearm. , and you will get a permit they show their qualified, i know my four years in the army, every year we had to go qualify, make sure they're qualified with the firearm they have, and let them carry firearms. i started to put it in the bill that i drafted that they would
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be concealed but i think we should leave that to commanders, so just as i was coming over here got the draft from legislative counsel and be filing it this week, it's a bill to authorize qualified members of the armed forces to carry firearms on military bases and installations and for other purposes and this act may be cited as the save our soldiers act or the s.o.s. act. and it does apply, would apply, to all soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines, coast guard, it applied to all of our uniform mill -- uniformed military. and it sess, in general, any qualified member of the armed forces may carry a firearm on a military base or installation and it goes through to set forth how you go a about applying for
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the permit to do that. we can trust them with weapons of mass destruction, we ought to be able to trust them with a pistol. with a firearm. so mr. speaker, i hope that this gets legs and we will get this passed through the house with widespread, bipartisan support, especially in this election year, people seem to be more acutely attentive to what their constituents think, so that's why i know it would be a bipartisanly passed bill, if we'll bring it up this year, and then send it to the senate, our friend senator reid may not want to bring it up, but then if he won't bring it up, then the only other alternative would be for voters to turn out members of mr. reid's party so he wouldn't be the majority leader so we could get someone who would bring that bill to the floor so
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we don't have another attack at fort hood or another navy yard or somewhere else and have to go gee, what could we have done? and some of the rest of us repeat for the ump teent time, you should -- for the umpteenth time, you should let people who are qualified to carry firearms, carry firearms. we have seen over and over, killers go to where they know firearms are prohibited like the colorado shooter going to a theater farther away than some close because those that were closer allowed firearms. and it will be terrific if we could do that for our military and i know there are some commanders who take the [inaudible] from our commander in chief and say -- nod from our commander in chief and say, oh, we don't think that's a good idea. but it is a good idea. it's something we should do and
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it's time we moved in that direction. and, mr. speaker, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. under the speaker's announced policy of january 5, 2011, the chair recognizes the gentleman from new york, mr. engel, for 0 minutes. mr. engel: thank you very much, mr. speaker. since my election to the united states house of representatives in 1988, i've been immensely proud to be a part of new york's congressional delegation. my colleagues from new york and i, both democratic and republican, have united many times to fight for causes that are critical for our state. in the wake of terrible tragedies like september 11, 2001, and most recently hurricane sandy, we have come together to perform our most
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important duties as members of congress, which is our obligation to do what's best for the people of new york. it is important, though, that we don't solely band together in times of tragedy. rather, we must also gather in celebration of the people and occasions that make our empire state a great state. that is why i am delighted to rise today in recognition of a hudson river school of painters, the first school of art indigenous to the united states. the hudson river runs through my district, the district of many of my colleagues, some will be speaking here today as well. and we are very, very proud of that river and proud of what it represents. the hudson river school of art is comprised of a group of 19th century painters, including thomas cole, frederick edwin church, asher brown durrand, francis cropsy, alfred
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beerstock, john frederick kenset, george innis, and thomas moran. today these artists' paintings can be found in the united states capitol, the national gallery of art and the state department as well as the metropolitan museum of art in new york city, the art institute of chicago and the museum of fine arts in boston. ow, next to me are two portraits of two of the hudson river school's most celebrated painters. jasper francis cropsy and thomas cole are the father of hudson river school. who did these sculptures is greg wyatt and my friend who is with us today, whose primary medium of
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artistic expression is cast-iron and i'd like everybody to see these because they're truly magnificent and represent the greatness of our state and the greatness of the hudson river. on the third easel right here is cropsy's 1860 masterpiece, autumn on the hudson. and it's truly beautiful, just as this portrait shows. as its name suggests, some of the hudson river schools -- school's most notable works portray the majesty can of new york's hudson river valley. however the hudson river painters capture the grandeur of a varlte of new york's -- variety of new york's national treasures and again i'm proud to represent part of the hudson valley. from the hudson valley's to the in -- tranquility of the ocean, the hudson river school brilliantly
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encapsulated new york's diverse yet unparalleled beauty. i rise today not only to celebrate the hudson river school's contributions to america's artistic cannon, but also to the environment they so beautifully immortalized. hudson river school paintings helped americans across the nation understand the natural magnificence found across distant corners of the u.s. this understanding in turn helped nurture the idea that such magnificence ought to be preserved for future generations. this idea culminated in 1916 with the creation of a national park system and persisted into the 1960's when environmentalists used hudson river school paintings to demonstrate the need for legislation such as the clean air act and the clean water act , to protect america's stunning resources and how glad we are that this congress passed those laws.
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it follows then that the hudson river school illustrates not only what art can do for the individual spirit, but also for the health of a nation. mr. speaker, it's my hope that the residents of new york and the united states might gain an appreciation for the hudson river school and its tremendous impact on our nation and its culture. to help show our appreciation, i have introduced house resolution 480, honoring the hudson river school painters for their contributions to the united states. as a new yorker, i am truly grateful to these artists for immortalizing the pristine beauty of new york's past. in the forthcoming speeches, my colleagues from new york will highlight their own appreciation of the hudson river school and its invaluable contributions to our nation. i want to also add, mr. speaker, that we have a number of people who have journal idea here from new york to sell -- journeyed here from new york to celebrate these contributions and witness this special order.
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among those are our distinguished former colleague, my good friend, the gentleman from new york, congressman hinchey. i welcome maurice, his wife and his daughter back to washington and all the people here today, including greg wyatt, and so many other wonderful people. i now call upon -- i yield to my colleague from new york, mr. tonko. mr. tonko: i rise on behalf a of the painters and a i do want to thank our colleague, representative engel, the gentleman from new york, for
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hosting this special order on the house floor to honor the 19th century hudson river school of painting. there are so many who cherish this institution, including, as was just mentioned, our former colleague, representative maurice hinchey, who i see seated in the gallery along with his family, and certainly he represented the hudson region, hudson river valley region of new york in such fine fashion and with a great appreciation for the arts and for cultural education. and it's also cherished by individuals like barn bus mchenry who as chair of the palisades interstate park mission understands the value of this great school and certainly folks like greg wyatt who as you have seen is a sculpture and has produced great work -- sculptor and has produced great work as a director of school of art at hastings on hudson. and so many who believe in the
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message that is sent forth by this great institution. the hudson river school of painting was the first uniquely american style of painting. the school's style painting was popularized in the 1820's and lasted for much of the 19th century. you already heard many of the prominent painters listed by representative engel in his comments. today we are here to honor their contribution to our region, to our state of new york and to this nation. the hudson river school of paint aing was founded in upstate new york in the hudson river valley and the nearby mountains. the hudson river school's landscapes capture the natural and rural beauty of my home state of new york on canvas, including the majestic and mighty waters of that great region. the hudson river valley has always had a special importance for our nation. it was the pathway for early settlers to begin the westward movement that expanded our nation's borders. to this day we celebrate the hudson river school of painting
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across the country and continue to do so in areas like albany, new york, the capital region of new york, at the albany institute of art, one of the oldest museums in the country, many of the works from this hudson river school artists are on display. last week i had the privilege of visiting the institute and made certain that i stopped by the view at the institute of history and art the several paintings that are on display by these magnificent artists. one of these paintings that caught my eye and is near and dear to many is that of jasper cropsy's dawn of morning at lake george. which is pictured here beside me and captures the untouched beauty of lake george. although the painting illuminates a quieter and distant time, many residents of the capital region continue to visit and enjoy the beauty of lake george today. lake george is the largest lake in the adirondacks and is within the adirondacks state park preserve in upstate new
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york. ed adirondacks preserve was established in 1892 by the state of new york and covers more than six million acres of protected areas. cropsy's dawn of morning at lake george captures the serenity that he imagined once existed and reminds us of the spectacular site of nature -- sight of nature, including our trees, the mountains and the waters. in addition to capturing the beauty of new york over time, the hudson river school artists began traveling more widely, eventually painting scenes throughout new england, the american west, western europe, north africa, the middle east and south america. the paintings of the american west were particularly popular. these realistic scenes of what was then essentially foreign land to most of the american people sparked the imagination and echoed the voices of the growing grassroots conservation movement illustrating the need to preserve the wonders of our natural american landscape. in fact, many landscapes of the hudson river school were used
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to support the creation of the first national parks. inspired in part by these paintings, the national park system has been a significant part of our environmental inheritance, protecting some of america's most iconic and majestic places. i have always believed that our natural parks embodied the history and heritage that make america unique. personally i grew up in amsterdam, new york, in the heart of the scenic moj hawk valuey of new york. my upbringing instilled in me a strong concern for the health of our environment and an appreciation for the delicacy of natural ecosystems and our native wildlife. as someone who believes that we must leave our children and grandchildren with the rich and enduring environmental inheritance, i am especially grateful for the role that the hudson river school of painting served and has continued to and will continue to serve in inspiring our nation to preserve our land and to preserve our water. for many generations to come,
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the american people will have the opportunity to view these breath taking paintings and will be reminded why we must continue to preserve america's richness of natural beauty. mr. speaker, i conclude my remarks by urging our colleagues and the public to recognize the hudson river school of painting and the legacy fornled by its artists -- forged by its artists. while the school has many ties to my home state and our capital region of new york, we can all appreciate the contributions made to this mighty nation. also like to thank our colleague, the gentleman from new york, mr. engel, for his admirable work to promote and honor the hudson river school of painting and again i thank you for this opportunity to proclaim the greatness of this great school of artists and with that, mr. speaker, i yield to i believe our next speaker, our representative from new ork, john patrick maloney.
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mrs. maloney: mr. speaker, -- mr. maloney: mr. speaker, president franklin delano roosevelt once said, all my life i dreamed of going back to my home on the hudson river. it was the center of the world. he was referring to his habit late at night of remembering being a child before he was stricken with polio, before he was president, before he was burdened with the awesome responsibility of his office during a time of war. because being a child on the hudson river meant sledding down the hill behind hyde park
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and feeling totally free and he as a president, to forget the burdens of his office and to remember the miracle and dream of his youth. those of us who are blessed to represent the hudson valley understand that the hudson valley writes its beauty on our personalities and on our very ouls, it inscribes us with its timeless beauty and as it flows on endlessly by, we're reminded of the fleeting nature of our service and of our very lives. , such as p of artists frederick edwin church, somehow by hiking and sketching and
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xperiencing the hudson river valley found a way to translate what it means to those of us who live and work and raise our families there into these permanent lasting images and our wn modern day genius craig wyatt has found a way to capture them. so we pause here tonight to honor that, to draw inspiration from our natural envirlte, these artists began painting scenes one her brown durant has of the most beautiful pieces anyone will ever create of beakon, new york. it was painted across the river berg.
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today, my office looks out at that same image, at that same beauty. frederick church was one of the first to capture niagara falls within two weeks of its debut, his piece lured visitors to pay 25 cents. school, did the hudson but these paintings inexpired the establishment of our national park system in the early part of the 20th century that was founded by president teddy roosevelt. he said, there are no words that can tell the hidden spirit of the wilderness and reveal its melancholy, its
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charm. our painters found that hidden spirit and charm that franklin and teddy roosevelt both remembered. dating back 100 years, my neighbors in the hudson valley take great pride in our natural resources in protecting and conserving this unique home for us and for our children and for generations to come. and i want to take just a minute to recognize my predecessor and our former colleague, congressman hinchey and his family, who have joined us here tonight. when you follow congressman hinchey in the congress, you have some very big shoes to fill. i heard about his service and i enjoy the stories, because it sets for me an example of what i want to do in this body. you know, after congressman
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hinchey sacrificed for his country as a navy sailor, as my own father did, he became a respected state lawmaker and served here for two decades. my neighbors in the hudson valley know he worked for them for economic justice and economic equality because he believed this government should work for everyone, including me like him who grew up in a working-class family and spent some time working in a factory, because our country, as congressman hinchey understood, is better off when leadership like his supports ordinary americans, people like him who served in our military, our veterans, our working and middle-class families who struggle to put food on the table and pay the bills, but can appreciate the beauty of the environment and the timeless wonder of places like the hudson
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valley. congressman hinchey played a critical role in the modern environmental movement before it was widely recognized as important. back in 1996, when i was working for president clinton, congressman hinchey was authoring legislation that established the hudson valley natural heritage area. it currently links over 100 individual sites from saratoga to westchester while showcasing the unique role in american history and development. because of their leadership, my children, my grandchildren, will see and be able to treasure the hudson valley incredible unique agricultural and natural wonders.
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and congressman hinchey made sure that we remember the rich contributions of the hudson river school of painters. congressman hinchey knows like many of us do, there is no place in the country that compares to the hudson valley. and those of us lucky enough to live there are not surprised that it was the birth place of america's first and greatest school of art. in closing, let me just say not long ago, a friend of mine came over to my home, which is across from west point in cold spring and looks down the hudson river south towards the bear mountain bridge. i walked him up the property and the sun was going down and after he left, he sent a note, and he once saw a sunset like that in a frederick church
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painting, and i thought he made it up. but when i saw it with my own eyes at your house, i understood for the first time what inspired these great geniuses to capture of the r and beauty hudson river valley for all time. we honor their success in doing so tonight and honor those who continue that legacy, who join us here tonight. thank you, on before of a grateful hudson valley and grateful nation, and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: please refrain from referencing occupants of the gallery. the chair would like to remind the gallery to refrain from applause. the chair recognizes the gentleman from from iowa, mr. king, for 30 minutes. mr. king: it's my privilege to
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be recognized by you to address you here on the floor of the house of representatives and i appreciate this privilege to do so and something to encourage a lot of the members to participate in and express the wishes of their constituents and their opinions here on the floor so that not only you can turn an ear and listen to this presentation here tonight, but also so that it inspires dialogue all across america. and will remain a free country and can remain a constitutional republic if we have open debate and open dialogue and if the values of the american people remain consistent with our roots. and i would first, mr. speaker, start out with the listening to the dialogue of the gentleman who spoke ahead of me, and i would note that his statement that there are people that went ahead of him and his family that
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were blue collar. seems to me maybe a generation removed from the real america that most of it is blue collar. and i think it's important to note that this country that we are is not going to continue to prosper unless we have people -- people whom we respect and honor, who produce goods and services that have a marketable value here at home. for those who get paid to pontificate, i among them, that is an important function, those who get paid to sit on the couch, that is not important. but those who produce goods and services are the ones that grow our economy. in the private sector and allow us to be competitive with the countries around the world and i think of my neighbors many of them who are engaged in agriculture and how we compete with the most competitive economy in the world and we compete in a favorable way and we set the pace, set the pace in
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productivity and efficiency, in quality and food safety. that's the circle around my neighborhood that you can see in any direction looking out from my house and i'm proud of my neighbors that produce those goods and services that have a marketable value here at home and a lot of that is the kind of thing we call blue collar work and i'm impressed by the professionals who came to congress. i came from the construction world hands on, shoveling, agrees gun, yes, pencil and calculator from the lowest guy on the tote empole to a guy who started a construction company. we have been engaged in this economy -- i believe this is our 40th season that we are engaged in now. you see the flow of the economy and you have respect for those who put their hands in their back and mind to work every day. i appreciate also a great deal these values of america, the
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roots of who we are as a people. and i was observing this morning as i was getting ready to leave my place, that there was an individual who was interviewed n fox this morning and morning show by steve, an author, a friend, and he laid out the four principles of conservativism and i took the notes down and put them in my pocket because i believe he is exactly right, that in this country needs to be rooted in those principles of conservativism and without them we are cast adrift. here are the four principles he laid out. first one is respect for the tradition and wisdom of our past generations. that's a fairly succinct way by saying our founding fathers got it right, laid out fidelity and
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free enterprise that has been foundation becoming the greatest nation in the world. if we are to stay that way, we need to remain respectful of the wisdom. second one is rule of law. you have heard me speak often and consistently about the rule of law. lady justice -- the statue of the lady justice holding the perfectly balanced scale of justice waggete equally on either side but being blindfolded because she doesn't see class or race or ethnicity or sex. she sees simply, here's a human being before the court that is to be treated the same as any other human being regardless of where they sit, whatever the quality might be or the qualifications might be, lady justice is blind and the rule of law must apply to everyone
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equally. that's number two. the third one is, the belief that in individual freedom and liberty and i'll go even further in that these rights come from god. our founding fathers understood and articulated, we hold these truths to be self-evident and that means men and women are created equal and they are endo youed by their creator with certain inalienable rights. not freedom granted to you by government or the sovereign or the king, but this god-given individual liberty that comes from god that we then entrust from the people to the government, we alone, our soverage rights to the government to organize our society. government doesn't have the power. it's we, the people, that have the power and we loan that to
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government. and if government grants rights, then government can also take those rights away. if that's the case, we would be similar to many of the other governments, many of the other civilizations. we're not. we're the united states of america founded upon four of these conservative principles. all of these principles are conservative principles. respect for tradition and customs, rule of law, belief of individual freedom and liberty and fourth is belief in a law higher than man's law. those are the four principles of conservativism, a tidbit of wisdom that came out this morning. we here in this congress ought to reflect on those values that made america great and it's it is going to restore those values and carry america to the next legal of our destiny. and when this congress
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deficientiates from those principles and from the constitution and when the congress decides that they can -- they can tax some people and transfer that wealth to other people and somehow be a leveler or some kind of a wealth ansfer -- that resolves this class envy issue, america is diminished. what it does is, it diminishes the vitality of our people. if you get out of bed and go to work every day and you know uncle sam is going to get his share, the minute you punch that time clock, uncle sam gets and then the governor's hand comes out and he puts it in the pocket and you have other taxes to pay along the way and in the afternoon, you work for yourself and your family. it is depressing to think you don't get to work even in the
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morning, here at noon, if you go to work at 8:00, you are taking your lunch break before you are getting anything for you and your family. . what if the government is taking it all? we're going to confiscate all the money that you earn and we're going to dole it out to other people and you'll get your welfare check like everybody else and we're all going to have the same resources to work with, we're all going to have the same amount of clothing, shelter, recreation, we're all going to have the same health insurance policy, we're all going to drive an equal value car, but some have to work and those that don't want to don't. think of that. i've heard that. i've heard that debate on this floor. people will say from over here on the leftist side of the aisle, they will say, those that want a job should have a job. which implies that those that don't want to work shouldn't have to. and so if they are able-bodied, if they are able-minded, then
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they should be contributing to this economy or have earned or store up the wealth to sustain themselves. not tax the other person that's punching that time clock or going to work for that salary. because what happens is pretty soon the one who is being taxed to fund the one who is not working figures out that it doesn't pay so much to work and it happens in the margins. so people start moving across from one side to the other and over time you'll have good, smart, productive people that are smart enough to figure out, doesn't pay for me to do this any longer. and they'll drift over to maybe a part-time job, maybe a little work under the table, maybe some black market stuff, and maybe the rest of that they're just going to tap into some of the 80 difference means-tested federal welfare programs that we have in this country. and take their standard of living up above that that they might have if all they did was
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work. that's where this country has gone. the welfare program has grown so great that it's discouraged some of our most productive people. it's a disincentive. so, it discourages me that if we're maybe a generation removed from listening to the gentleman from hudson valuey, maybe a generation removed from blue collar, like to think we're always going to need blue collar people, we're always going to need for this country to have a middle class, a middle class that is growing in numbers, and increasing in prosperity in relation to the productivity that they're putting out and this country's always going to need to compete with the other countries in the world. we can't just collapse down into the idea that we're going to be an economy that has professionals that live in gated communities, that hire servants at a cheap rate, and then they'll have the people that are diminishing middle class and the unskilled and the low skilled, it will make a meager wage, always keeping that meager wage down by a
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refueling of legal and illegal, unskilled immigrants coming into this country, that can only compete in the low skilled jobs. the highest level of unemployment that we have, the double-digit unemployment in this country, mr. speaker, are the people in the lowest skilled jobs. so how is it that almost every democrat and a pretty respectable number of republicans can leap to this conclusion which is, we need more unskilled workers, we need more of these workers to come in because it will grow the economy? well, just because you have somebody -- if you bring in 1,000 people and we know that we're going to have to educate the children especially and the youth and we're going to provide health care and we'll be providing housing and nutrition, the food and clothing and shelter, as i said, 1,000 people could come in and in one of them does a day's work, that contributes to the g.d.p. the gross domestic product. so if a day's work of one in 1,000 contributes to the g.d.p.
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they, by their definition, say the economy's growing. the economy will grow if you have more and more immigration and they don't say unskilled. well, we have an opening here for some skilled people to come into this country. we have an oversupply of unskilled. we have 101.4 million americans of working age who are simply not in the work force. 101.4 million. that's bureau of labor statistics, off of their website, and the numbers total this. those 16 and up that are of working age, plus those who are on unemployment today, officially signed up on unemployment. add those numbers up, 101.4 million. 1/3 of our population is of working age and not in the work force. yes, some are retired and some are handicapped and some are home makers and some of them are in school, but a whole lot of them could actually be recruited to come into the work force and produce that good or service with marketable value, increase our g.d.p., and what's
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the cost to our society for putting more of the people that are 101.4 million that are not in the work force? what's the cost to our society if we call -- what if we called 10 million in, what if we called 20 million in, what if we brought 30 million or 40 million of the 101.4 million in and put them in the work force, what does that do? well, the significant percentage of them are on welfare and unemployment. so they're off the welfare and unemployment roles. that reduces the burden for the taxpayers. and when they go to the work force, they are in the producttive sector of the economy, they take their wage a, they pay their own payroll tax, that means they're paying their social security and their medicare and their medicaid. and so we get a two-for. we reduce the welfare rolls, we get more and more taxpayers, we bring social security into balance just simply by virtue of more people going to work and we have less of the deficit in our entitlements, medicare,
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medicaid, because they need less of it. that's what happens if you get this country going in the right direction. there are a number of ways to do that. you can't do it, mr. speaker, with the president who doesn't believe in work, for one thing. and when they learned, according to c.b.o.'s score, that obamacare would cost this economy the equivalent of 2.5 million jobs, in other words, 40 hours a week times, that's 40 hours, not the 30 hours that are in obamacare, 40 hours a week times 2.5 million workers, that's the reduced amount of productivity that comes because of the disincentives to work that are associated with obamacare, 2.5 million, the equivalent of 2.5 million jobs, what does the administration say? they say, well, that's going to be a good thing because if you're a home maker, now you get to make more home. if you're an artist, you get to paint more paintings. if you have hobbies you get to pursue your hobies and if you're a parent you get to spend more time with your children. first time i believe in the
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history of this country that a president of the united states and his administration have taken the position that less work was good for america. which just goes to show you, human beings have an almost infinite capacity to self-rationalize, mr. speaker, and that's what happened with the obama administration. they have exercised their almost infinite capacity to self-rationalize on piece after piece of this. they move their socialist agenda and then they self-rationalize their way along the way and now we're watching as obamacare has been a debacle and we're watching these numbers where the administration says, well, we've got 7.1 million people to sign up. 7.1 million people to sign up, hm. that was their goal, seven million. they just overshot it just a little bit. what we don't know are how many of those 7.1 million were insured before obamacare, how many of them decided that they would opt out of their existing policy and into an exchange policy, how many of them lost
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their insurance because of obamacare, and had no choice if they want to remain insured, but to opt into an exchange cair, what percentage of the 7.1 million were actually uninsured, without affordable options, and found their way onto an obamacare exchange and purchased insurance because -- and, once you go through all that, how many of them were not subsidized? out of the 7.1 million? what would be the point, mr. speaker, if we had -- we look at a society that supposedly had 48 million people without their own health insurance policy. well, i really wasn't alarmed by that. because i don't know where their right comes from to own your own health insurance policy. but we provided health services to everybody in this country, at least that shows up, at a minimum, to those that showed up in themental room. somehow they twisted this around to everybody has a right, everybody needs to own their own health insurance
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policy. so i stood on this floor about four years ago or so, maybe a little more, and made the argument that of the 48 million, when you subtract from that those who are qualified for medicaid and from that those who make over $75,000 a year and presumably could buy their own health insurance, those who qualify -- those who are unlawfully present in the united states, and you subtract from these -- from the 48 million, those who are uninsured -- down to the number of those who are uninsured without affordable options, your 48 million became 12.1 million which by the way is 4% of our population in the entire health care system of the united states. the insurance system and the delivery system is entirely redirected, transformed under obamacare to try to get at that 4% number. and meanwhile, it looks to me that we're going to have more people uninsured, not less, and by the way if you want to show up -- sign up in the rest of this year, sorry, you're out of
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luck, you missed the signup deadline. now, except for some narrow conditions, you're not going to be able to get insurance in this country. it is a calamity, mr. speaker. and it's one of the calamities. another one of the calamities, in the time that i have remaining, is a reflection upon the hearing today that attorney general holder came before the house judiciary committee. and his testimony comes about once a year before the judiciary. it's our job to have oversight over the justice department. and we've done that of course for a long, long time. and as each of the members of the panel questioned attorney general holder under oath, here is how i reflect upon this. i ask eric holder if he still held the position that he did the last time i questioned him in that the department of justice is an independent department that doesn't take directive from the president and his job is to provide equal justice under the law.
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generally speaking, any. and he agreed with that statement. i think that's the proper way to frame the job of attorney general. but to argue that the attorney general is not politically influenced by the president of the united states is a pretty tough argument to make, mr. speaker. when you think of this, that i take a you back to 2008, this was in the last weeks of the -- actually the last months of the bush administration. senator ted stevens for 40 years represented alaska in the united states senate. there were charges brought against him that were evaluated and investigated by federal officers, the f.b.i. and on october 27, 2008, senator ted stevens was found guilty of these charges of corruption that were brought against him. eight days later he lost his election to now senator bag
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etch in alaska. eight days later. and in october the following year, then former senator stevens was killed in a tragic plane crash. but here's the news, the modern news, mr. speaker. on march 27 of this year, it's announced in a little news story that hardly got any play that, one, at least one of the f.b.i. agents, it's reported in the news that her name is mary betting kept in her, has been severely disciplined, that that discipline has been imposed for let me say violations during the investigation and the prosecution of senator ted stevens. now, he's dead. he can't speak for himself. he was convicted in a trial that took place and was concluded eight days before his election. he narrowly lost the election in alaska. this prosecution, if it was
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investigated and operated in the fashion that would be reflected when you see that language that mary betting kepner, one of the f.b.i. agents was severely disciplined, that discipline has been imposed, what is the discipline? what did they do? do we think that eric holder is prosecuting now mary betting kepner for her involvement in the prosecution of ted stevens which may or may not have, unlikely did, bring about a change in the election of the united states senate, so that it gave the senate a 60-vote democrat majority and they were able to cram through components of obamacare that they would not have been able to cram through otherwise, think you would think would be worthy of a comment on the part of attorney general holder and see , is it worthy of now investigation and prosecution or could you at least release a statement as to the acts that she committed, the investigation that you did, if the case is closed, tell us. but when you have f.b.i. agents
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improperly conducting themselves to the extent that the holder justice department severely disciplined them, you have to wonder if it didn't change the course of history. you have to wonder if the f.b.i. had not conducted themselves in that fashion that brought about the severe discipline, would ted stevens have been re-elected, would that have changed the results in the united states senate, would be maybe perhaps -- would we maybe perhaps not be living under obamacare today if those actions had not taken place inside this justice department and you would think the attorney general would look into that or at least have a comment. that's number one. second one would be the very aggressive overreach of the investigation of aaron schwartz and that topic is something that brought about his suicide and there's been much dialogue in this country about that. another one that i brought up to general holder is this. the investigation and prosecution of conrad baret. now we've all, mr. speaker, heard about the knockout game
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in this country and it's where youth, generally speaking, will go pick someone and decide, i'm going to punch them and knock them out on the street, see if i can do it with one punch and my buddies are going to see me do this and sometimes it's videotaped and we see this on television. . the cases i have seen are black on white game. the knockout game appears to be black on white crime. i fought against the hate crimes legislation because that just turns into a tool and when you punish someone for what you think they think rather than the overt act they commit, you are going into an area of law that allows discretion on the part of prosecution and may or may not result in more justice. i believe we ought to severely punish the people that are
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committing the overt acts but ot go down the road. based upon whatever particular minority group that we might be in. you would think that a country full of black on white crime in a knockout game something that has been in the news for months, that eric holder, if he wanted to prosecute a hate crime, to pick one of those african-american youth that has gone in there and punched someone on the streets because -- targeted because of their difference in race and prosecuted and you think he could have picked one of those. instead they picked conrad barrett, a white guy, who punched an african-american to play his side of the knockout game. if he is guilty of that, of course it's wrong. we have states that can
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prosecute those kind of assault and violent acts. but it strikes me that the others didn't fit the profile of the holder administration and so they went after the one example of the white guy and the african-american victim instead the white victims and the african-american alleged perpetrators. next one is the prosecution of usa who did the movie "obama 2016" and brought out things where this administration is going. he is no friend of the administration. but it is alleged that he directed $20,000 through friends that were given to a u.s. senate campaign in new york. it's alleged. don't know if it's true, but it must be true that there are thousands of americans that have done a similar thing for a lot more money. the holder justice department
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couldn't find them but found sousa to target for prosecution. they targeted with federal prosecution governor bob mcdonnell in virginia who has five former attorneys general who vouched for the language of the law and believe the holder justice department has stretched the limits of that and we shall see that. governor chris christie had a problem with the traffic being closed on a bridge and created a national furor but within a week, the holder justice department was investigating governor christie for his use of the funds for sandy relief fund. how is a holder justice department not going to look into transgression in the senator ted stevens investigation which brought about a result in that election and change in obamacare, they aren't going to look into the
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overzealous prosecution of ortiz and schwartz. they are going to prosecute conrad barrett for a hate crime and continue to prosecute sousa, "obama 2016" and continue to prosecute the two governors while they let people off the hook like the new black panthers in philadelphia, james clapper who contradicted himself under oath. hat would be if proven a charge. governor corzine, a billion dollars missing in global crossing. tigationer and the inves has to take place by subpoena and contempt of congress because the holder has a blind eye and said there is not a smidgeon of
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corruption and exempting entire classes of people from prosecution like illegal immigrants. they are exempt from prosecution and removal. the marijuana -- huge companies are exempted, even though it's federal law. doma, attorney general holder has refused to defend do mmp a. voter fraud -- they bring action against states like texas and llege that texas is imposing a pole tax and that's what we have in the justice department today. it's hard to call it justice and be hard to take this country to the next level of our destiny if we can't have these values that i have brought out in the beginning, these values of respect for tradition and wisdom, the rule of law, individual freedom and liberty and law higher than man's law.
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we must restore those in this country if we are to restore the pillars of american exceptionalism. i appreciate your attention and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the chair recognizes the gentleman from iowa for a motion. mr. king: mr. speaker, i move the house do now adjourn. the speaker pro tempore: the question is on the motion to adjourn. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the motion is
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>> it is the budget and appropriations season on capitol hill. joined by the budget reporter of "cq roll call." >> one of the interesting things about it is that, like last year, this budget would balance in 10 years. that is something a lot of conservatives are insisting on. but what they had to do to make it balance in 10 years is, they had to use dynamic scoring, where they got a score from the congressional budget office based on the amount of deficit reduction, which basically said the deficit reduction would actually cause the economy to expand, and that would bring in more revenue and reduce spending.
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they use dynamic scoring in this budget to get it to balance 10 years. that is the first time that has been done. houset does the republican leadership have to do with conservative members to get them to vote on this budget? sure thateded to make it balanced in 10 years. that, they had to increase some of the spending cuts. basically, thee, government spending for domestic agencies, starting in 2016. the dynamic scoring probably will help as well. that is something a lot of republicans believe in. >> the republican study proposal is one of the proposals. how different is their plan for the -- from the ryan budget?
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>> it cuts spending a lot more than it cuts revenues. the ryan budget really cut spending. it would balance in four years, compared to the ryan plan. >> the headline in your piece says, the democratic alternative budget would add $1.8 trillion in taxes. that, but does the democratic budget show about where their priorities are? >> it increases spending a lot. does notratic budget really make any changes to , or a lotr medicaid of other mandatory spending programs. and it increases discretionary spending. it gets rid of the sequester over the next 10 years. increaseis the biggest
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they are proposing for their 2015 budget? >> it is really spread throughout the budget. they assume that unemployment insurance will be extended. reformsume immigration overhaul, which would bring in more money. as i said, the discretionary spending is increased. and they increased spending on other social programs. it is really spread throughout. >> the progressive caucus will also have their shot at a budget alternative. what should viewers know? >> both of those budgets would have more spending than the democratic alternative. the progressive caucus budget
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would have the most additional spending. also revenue. the progressive budget would actually increase revenue by almost $7 trillion over 10 years. by comparison, the democratic alternative would increase it by under $2 trillion over 10 years. >> the president's budget also getting a hearing on the house floor. >> almost every republican and every democrat will vote against -- against it. that is because democrats consider it a gimmick. representative mulvaney from south carolina puts the obama budget together. -- he saysally his it is the democratic budget, but it is his depiction of obama's budget. gimmick, say it is a
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that it is not really obama's budget. they will vote against it. of course, all republicans will vote against it because it is the obama budget. in terms of what the senate might do, we are seeing lots of alternatives offered in the house. what is going to happen in the senate? >> little to nothing. the senate budget chairwoman is not writing a budget resolution this year. it is possible that some alternative budget resolutions could be considered in the senate. is not a lot of appetite even among republicans in the senate to have a big debate on the budget this year. >> you can read his reporting at "cq roll call." >> secretary of state john kerry was criticized by senate
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republicans today on capitol number ofa foreign-policy decisions. that hearing is next on c-span. the house began work on a 10 year budget plan. obama signs an executive order on pay equity. >> a proposed comcast time warner merger. the two cablem companies and other media companies will testify. morning at 10:00 a.m. eastern on c-span 3. next, secretary of state john kerry takes questions about syria apostates civil war, russia's annexation of crimea, and middle east peace violations. senator kerry testified at the committee he used to chair before moving to the state department. chaired by bob menendez of new
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jersey, this hearing is two hours, 45 minutes.
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>> good morning. this hearing will come to order. mr. secretary, welcome back to washington. i understand you have trouble to 44 countries, logged over 850 hours in the air, which translates to an incredible 35 days of flying. i imagine it feels good to have your feet on the ground in a place like this committee. which you once chaired. a familiar place like this committee, which you once chaired. so we look forward to hearing your priorities for the state department for the coming year, as the situations in the ukraine, syria, and venezuela demonstrate, never has the need for american leadership and engagement in the world been greater. we understand the limitations and constraints that govern the budgetary environment. and that getting our fiscal house in order at home is the wellspring from which our national power flows.
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but, in this complex and rapidly changing global environment, we also know that our national security interests are priority number one. and they cannot be jeopardized. the $40.3 billion in base discretionary funding for the department of state and u.s.aid equal to the 2014 enacted level provides solid footing after several years of uncertainty for our international efforts. the $5.9 billion for overseas contingency operation activities allow us to continue to address challenges in the middle east and north africa, including the syrian humanitarian crisis in afghanistan, and other frontline states. we also need to make sure this budget is structured so that our nation is capable of meeting the new challenges and opportunities of today's world. and we face many challenging issues. most recently the menacing threat by russia in ukraine, a challenge to its very existence. we can and will continue to stand with the ukrainian people who, by right, will choose their own destiny.
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in addition to authorizing the billion dollars in loan guarantees for ukraine and other assistance to strengthen civil society and security in the region, we've also given you tools to respond to russia in the form of sanctions. and our message to president putin and his cronies must be robust and swift. on syria, as we commemorate the third anniversary of the uprising i'm pleased that the administration is prioritizing assistance. both in humanitarian aid and support for the syrian opposition. that $1.7 billion request sends an important signal to the world and to the syrian people of our commitment. but this leads to a broader question. that we can demonstrate u.s. leadership on humanitarian assistance, but i'd like to hear from you, mr. secretary, how we are demonstrating and intend to demonstrate leadership in ending this crisis. on afghanistan and pakistan, let me say i support the administration's efforts to right-size our investments in the overseas contingency operations account, but in this
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year of transition, i was hoping that more of that budget could be shifted into the base budget so that we could begin to normalizes assistance for these frontline states. we'd also take special note of the elections held in afghanistan this weekend, in the face of intimidation by the taliban, the afghan people demonstrated the desire to shape their destiny of their own country. the election was a historic marker in our engagement in afghanistan, and we are hopeful that the final result will be credible, and genuinely reflect the will of the afghan people. now, there is a place that i'm disappointed in the budget. and that is in the western hemisphere. the 2015 request is a $358 million or 21% decrease from the fy-13 budget. i'm incredibly troubled that every other major account in the western hemisphere is being cut and that where these programs are coming to an end, there's not a reinvesting in those funds in the region. i don't dispute the importance of other priorities laid out in the administration's proposal,
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but i have seen year after year after year after year a continuous cut in the hemisphere, and i believe that those cuts lead us to lack a comprehensive approach to latin america, and the necessary resources to back it up. whether in central america, where nations are facing a crisis of criminal violence and major challenges to governance and the rule of law, where honduras and el salvador continue to have the world's highest murder rates which undercut economic development in those countries and lead to high levels of immigration that directly affect our country, and then threats to democracy, freedom of expression and human rights in our mem us fear from cuba to venezuela and ecuador should be a concern to us. as the volatile situation in venezuela has shown undermining democracy can lead to a political crisis and economic instability that has implications for the entire region. so let me close simply by saying the overall budget sets a strong proposed funding level. but along with my concerns about western hemisphere issues, i'm
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also concerned that there are significant reductions in humanitarian assistance and global health accounts. there's a nearly 5% cut in global health, with the largest reductions in the global fund to fight aids, tb and malaria. so with those concerns, and what i overall find a budget that i can support, i want to thank you, mr. secretary, for coming back to the committee. we look forward to hearing your views on all of these areas of concerns. i'm sure many members will have many questions outside of the budget, as well. and with that let me turn to senator corker for his remarks. >> thank you, mr. chairman. and i too want to extend my welcome back here. i know you've been doing a lot of traveling, and since we don't really pass budgets, or reconcile them, and since we haven't yet moved to authorizations, although i think we may soon, i'm not going to address the budgetary issues. but talk about some other policy issues, if i could. mr. secretary, we all appreciate
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so much your willingness to serve in the capacity that you are right now. we all supported you. you had unanimous support of this committee and everybody in the senate to do what you're doing and you certainly have gone after it with a tremendous amount of energy. but i think i can speak, i think there's probably not a person on this committee, in spite of their appreciation for what you're doing, that doesn't have concerns some place relative to our foreign policy at present. syria, this committee strongly supported the authorization for the use of force. committee passed overwhelmingly support for the opposition and i think all of us understand today that the smartest thing assad did for his own self-survival was to kill 1200 people with chemical weapons. we ended up jumping in syria's lap. we now sit in the back of the bus as iran and russia really drive policy in syria.
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one of your assistants was up here a few weeks ago and made some really reckless comments about a military strategy, if you will, in syria, and said that they would brief us. we've had no briefing. it's been two weeks. and as the chairman mentioned, instead of that we read about something last night in "the wall street journal" relative to disputes between you and the pentagon. and i do hope today that you will lay out clearly for us in this open setting what our strategy is in syria and hopefully it's not just allowing people to kill each other. since chemical weapons were used another 50,000 people have been killed. barrel bombs are being dropped indiscriminately on populations there. assad is dragging his feet on alleviating the chemical weapons, because you knows that that prolongs his survival and continues to allow us, russia, and iran, to prop him up. so i know there are a lot of concerns about our syria policy. we have no policy from what i can tell.
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other than, again, allowing people to kill each other off. and us making commitments to the opposition that we do not honor, and leaving them in refugee camps, and basically stranded without the support that we committed to on the front end. in ukraine, you know, here we have a 40,000 troop buildup. we know that per public records, russia's basically paying people to create, to foment violence in the eastern part of the country. i hope that you will address when we will implement the executive order relative to secretary oral sanctions. and hopefully that will be this week, if they continue to have the buildup that they have. i'm confused by the policy. we cast igate them on one side, on the other hand we're exchanging people with them. i'm confused about what our policy really is. and iran, this is the first administration ever to agree that iran will enrich uranium.
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that has never happened in the history of our country and yet this administration has agreed to that. and afghanistan, i'm concerned because of a monster that we've created, karzai, and his and his actions which are certainly incoherent, i'm afraid we're going to pull out and not do the things that have been so strongly recommended by the pentagon and others. and in china, in the seneca cues we have a situation where we have unresolved disputes, we have skirmishes that occurring. these are the kind of things that create world wars. and yet our allies are concerned about where our support is, japan is continuing to move ahead with ways to create their own abilities to defend themselves. so mr. chairman -- mr. secretary, excuse me, i have a lot of questions. and my sense is that the administration in so many ways through rhetoric, and persuasion
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seems to think that people like the leaders of russia and china and other places respond to nice rhetoric. i don't think that's the case. i'm concerned about our policy and i hope today due to questioning many have, including me, i hope you will lay out very clearly what our policies are in these areas. mr. chairman i thank you for calling the hearing. i look forward to our witness. >> thank you, senator corker. with that, mr. secretary, the floor is yours. your full statement will be entered into the record without objection and we look forward to your statement and then to engaging in a dialogue. >> thank you, mr. chairman, very much. ranking member corker. members of the committee. i'm very happy to be back here and appreciate enormously the committ committee's indulgence to have shifted this hearing because it came at a critical moment just before i was asked by the president to meet with lavrov relative to ukraine.
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and so, i also want to thank everybody on the committee for working so hard to move the nominations, which obviously is critical. i think our -- it's not the fault of the committee, but with the combination of vetting process, and public processes, and the combination of the slowdown on the floor of the senate, i think we're averaging something like 220-some days, and some people at 300 days, and some over 365 days. so i have literally only in the last month gotten my top team in place, one year in, and i'm very grateful to the committee, mr. chairman, you've worked really hard to make that happen, and the ranking member, great cooperation. senator mccain and others helped to intervene on that. and i'm -- i want to thank you all for that. a lot of questions, senator corker, that you raised. and i really look forward to answering all of them. because there is a cohesive approach.
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we're living in an extremely complicated world. unlike anything most of us grew up with. and we can talk about that here today. because it really is critical to the question of how we deal, as the united states, in our budget, in our own politics here, and in our -- in the choices we make. obviously senator corker just brought it up. the intense focus on ukraine continues. and everything that we've seen in the last 48 hours, from russian provocateurs and agents operating in eastern ukraine, tells us that they've been sent there, determined to create chaos. and that is absolutely unacceptable. these efforts are as ham-handed as they are transparent, frankly. and quite simply, what we see from russia, is illegal and illegitimate effort to destabilize a sovereign state
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and create a contrived crisis with paid operatives, across an international boundary, engaged in this initiative. russia's clear and unmistakable involvement in destabilizing, and engaging in separatist activities in the east of ukraine is more than deeply disturbing. no one should be fooled, and believe me no one is fooled, by what could potentially be a contrived pretext for military intervention just as we saw in crimea. it is clear that russian special forces and agents have been the catalyst behind the chaos of the last 24 hours. some have even been arrested and exposed. and equally as clear must be the reality that the united states and our allies will not hesitate to use 21st century tools to hold russia accountable for 19th century behavior. we have stated again and again that our preference, and the preference of our friends and
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allies, is de-escalation. and a diplomatic solution. but russia should not, for a single, solitary second, mistake the expression of that preference as an unwillingness to do what is necessary to stop any violation of the international order. at nato last week, and in all of my conversations of the past weeks, it is clear that the united states and our closest partners are united in this effort. despite the costs, and willing to put in effect tough new sanctions on those ark straighting this action, and on key sectors of the russian economy. in energy, banking, mining, they're all on the table. president obama has already signed an executive order to implement these actions if russia does not end its pressure and aggression on ukraine. now, let me make equally important statement.
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